Blankets and Wine back to basics

The revamped edition of Blankets and Wine will come with a children’s play park, food and drinks area since revellers will not be allowed to carry food, and an art market. Photo/Courtesy

What you need to know:

  • Last year, when House of DJs announced that they were not going to organise more editions of Blankets and Wine, speculation was that the festival was no more but the announcement came of a revamp and the first of the revamped editions will be held on June 30 at the Lugogo Grounds.

After the last edition of Blankets and Wine, a good number of Ugandans had mixed feelings about the entire edition. 
Many people had enjoyed the thrill that was Konshens but there were reservations; the show for many people felt like a concert than a festival. It was not surprising that even when Konshens did a good job on stage, the show trended for the wrong reasons.
At the beginning of the year, through social media, House of DJs announced that they were not going to organise more editions of Blankets and Wine.

With speculation if that was all for Blankets and Wine, it was announced that a revamped version of the edition would take place but they were yet to announce the dates.
It has since been announced that the first of the revamped editions will be held on June 30 at the Lugogo Grounds.
Afsa Umutesi is the new curator and organiser of Blankets and Wine. She says the edition will be looking at going back to the basics when the celebration was a family day out kind of festival.

Thus, this edition will come with a children’s playing pack, food area and an art market. Unlike the first editions though, this edition will not allow revellers to bring their own wine, any other beverages or food. 

More stages
Another addition to the experience, are two stages. This time the festival will have a DJ stage dubbed the Onja Onja Stage for DJ experiences and the main stage for most of the day’s performers.

According to the festival website, Onja Onja is the food fair within the festival, where thriving local and international cuisines come to play. Onja Onja caters to many food preferences and dietary needs – including vegan and vegetarian – and provides an opportunity to explore new and different flavours while satisfying people’s cravings.
This year, in a bid to encourage cashless transactions, the festival has partnered with MTN Momo for both ticket sales and purchases during the festival.

According to Umutesi, the revamp was needed to capture the soul of Blankets and Wine and everything the festival has always stood for, an experience that is safe for everyone.
The part of the show being more of an experience than a music concert is what guided the curation of the next edition. 
For instance, the artistes on the mainstage are a mixture of East Africa’s oldskool and Uganda’s soul and hip hop sounds that may not be mainstream at the time but are catching on with specific audiences.

From Nameless, Rachel Magoola and Eddy Kenzo to spoken word artiste and singer E’brahim Soulo and Sandra K.  You could call many of these niche artistes who usually perform at specific shows and Blankets and Wine is trying to tap into that energy.